For 15 years Laurel King of First MB Church in Wichita, Kan., has been leading a school kits drive for Mennonite Central Committee. She is excited about providing school supplies for children around the world, but for King, the project is more about inspiring people to discover the joy of serving others.
How many school kits does First MB Church make?
This year it was about 700. But it’s not about the numbers. My goal is to get as many kinds of groups involved as I can.
Why are school kits a good way of learning service?
Packing school kits is a very simple, concrete project even small kids can accomplish in an hour on a Sunday morning.
Who gets involved?
Lots of groups help pack the kits — Sunday school and AWANA classes. Our Prime Timers senior group would do them all if I would let them. And I dole out the fabric to gals in the church to sew the bags.
Where do the school supplies come from?
One man in our church gets a pallet full of supplies from Walmart. He keeps it in his garage for me to pick up whenever I have a group ready to pack.
What has inspired you?
About five years ago I opened an MCC giving catalog and there was a picture of a beaming boy holding one of our school kits. I recognized the fabric and even had a picture of the fourth graders who had packed that bag. I said, “Lord, thank you. I needed to see that.”
What do you tell the people who help?
This is an easy project, but I hope this pushes you on to try something out of your comfort zone. We owe God way more than we could ever pay in a lifetime of service. 2 Corinthians 9:12 says, “This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks.”